Seniors and Persons with Disabilities
To assist senior citizens and persons with limited mobility, Pennsylvania invests in affordable and accessible transportation alternatives. There is a wide range of shared-ride and public transportation programs available to help Pennsylvania residents enjoy the benefits of alternative transportation regardless of income or physical disability.
All fixed-route public transportation systems statewide offer accessible transportation that meets federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements for persons who travel within 3/4 mile of a fixed route. Also, individuals with disabilities presenting a Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Reduced Transit Fare Identification Card or a Medicare Card at the time of fare payment ride for half-fare on fixed-route transit service during non-peak periods in certain counties.
Beyond the fixed-route service, there are several programs offered in Pennsylvania designed to make transportation accessible to everyone.
Pennsylvania offers free transit and shared-ride programs to help provide affordable transportation options for senior citizens:
Free Transit Program for Senior Citizens
The free transit program allows senior citizens to ride free on local fixed-route service whenever the local public transit system is operating. To be eligible, you must be 65 years of age or older.
To ride free, you will need a senior citizen transit identification card. The card is available free of charge from participating local transit operators. You will need to present a state ID card, a Medicare card or other acceptable proof of age document to the transit operator to obtain the identification card.
For schedules and hours of service, contact your local public transit agency.
To learn more about the free transit program, contact your local transit operator or the Bureau of Public Transportation:
Bureau of Public Transportation
400 North St., Sixth Floor
P.O. Box 3151
Harrisburg, PA 17105-3151
For older Pennsylvanians, the shared-ride program enables senior citizens 65 years of age and older to use shared-ride, demand-responsive (normally curb-to-curb) services and pay only a small portion of the regular shared-ride fare. Senior citizens or an approved third-party sponsor pay 15 percent of the fare, and the Lottery Fund pays the remaining 85 percent on local shared-ride transportation service. The shared-ride program discount is available in every county of the state during public transportation shared-ride service hours, which are determined locally.
To qualify for the reduced fare, seniors must be at least 65 years of age and be able to supply one of the eligible proofs of age to their local shared-ride provider. Prior-day advance registration is required, and service is available to anyone who either pays the fare or for whom a human service agency pays the fare.
To see which providers offer this service in your area, check the PennDOT Service Map.
Pennsylvania Department of Aging
The Pennsylvania Department of Aging offers services and programs to assist older Pennsylvanians. Most of these services are provided by the state's 52 Area Agencies on Aging.
To learn more about alternative transportation programs and find other information for senior citizens, visit the Pennsylvania Department of Aging website or contact the agency at:
555 Walnut St., Fifth Floor
Harrisburg, PA 17101-1919
717-783-1550 or 866-286-3636 (long-term care helpline)
Persons with Disabilities
In Pennsylvania, individuals with disabilities have access to a wide range of alternative transportation options, including shared-ride services, paratransit and discount programs.
All fixed-route public transportation systems statewide offer accessible transportation that meets federal Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) requirements for persons who travel within 3/4 mile of a fixed route. Also, individuals with disabilities, presenting a Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Reduced Transit Fare Identification Card or a Medicare Card at the time of fare payment, ride for half-fare on fixed-route transit service during non-peak periods in certain counties.
Rural Transportation Program
For persons with disabilities who live and/or travel outside the fixed-route system, Pennsylvania offers the Persons with Disabilities (PwD) Program, which provides service beyond the ADA requirements. Through this program, persons with disabilities who are age 18 through 64 may receive reduced rates on shared-ride, curb-to-curb, advance reservation transportation services. In 66 counties, persons with disabilities pay a portion of the regular fare and the PwD program pays the remainder of the fare (up to 85 percent) for trips that are not eligible for any other funding source.
The PwD Program is not available in Philadelphia County, since extensive fixed-route service in those counties enables persons with disabilities to travel on ADA-complementary service.
Persons wishing to benefit from the PwD Program must provide proof of disability. Prior-day advance registration is required and service is open to the public. To see which providers offer this service in your area, check the PennDOT Service Map.
Welfare to Work Program
Pennsylvania also offers the Welfare to Work (W2W) Program, a transportation assistance program that connects recipients of Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) and other low-income persons with access to jobs and to child care services that are often located in suburban areas with minimal public transportation.
To see which providers offer this program in your area, check the PennDOT Service Map.
Accessibility and Public Transportation
The Persons with Disabilities Half-Fare Program allows individuals with disabilities to ride for half-fare on fixed-route transit service during non-peak periods. To use this service, you must present a Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Reduced Transit Fare Identification Card or a Medicare Card at the time of fare payment